A diminished supply of available homes is swelling prices in large U.S. metro areas from New York to Miami to Los Angeles, squeezing out would-be buyers and pushing up rents as more people are forced to remain tenants.


The tight supply of homes and a shortage of affordable rental housing have improved little in recent years for a variety of reasons. Among the key factors is that construction has yet to regain the pace of homebuilding that predated the bust.

"As the economy continues to recover, as income picks up as household formations pick up, it's not spurring a supply response," said Chris Herbert, managing director of Harvard's Joint Center for Housing Studies. "It's a worsening of the situation that was evident last year."

The real fascinating thing is the "not spurring a supply response" part. That suggests to us that there's a huge amount of corporate trepidation about the economy (and at this point, namely, that it's about to fall off a cliff...)

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